844: Death of Pope Gregory IV.
1327: Edward III acceeds to the English throne after the abdication of Edward II.
1533: Henry VIII marries his second wife Anne Boleyn.
1759: Birth of Scottish poet Robert Burns.
1817: Gioacchino Rossini’s opera “La Cenerentola” (Cinderella) premieres in Rome.
1839: Henry Fox Talbot exhibits early photographs to the Royal Institution.
1840: American naval expedition under Charles Wilkes is the first to identify Antarctica as a new continent.
1882: Birth of author Virginia Woolf.
1890: Journalist Nellie Bly beats Phileas Fogg’s fictitious time around world by 8 days.
1894: James J Corbett KOs Charley Mitchell for the heavyweight boxing title.
1915: Transcontinental telephone service inaugurated when Alexander Graham Bell in New York calls Thomas Watson in San Francisco.
1919: Founding of the League of Nations.
1924: The first Winter Olympic Games open in Chamonix, France.
1939: Joe Louis KOs John Henry Lewis in the first round for heavyweight boxing title. On the same day the first nuclear fission experiment (splitting of a uranium atom) in the US occurs in the basement of Pupin Hall, Columbia University by a team including Enrico Fermi.
1947: Gangster Al Capone dies of syphillis.
1949: The first Israeli election won by David Ben-Gurion’s Mapai party.
1971: Charles Manson is convicted of the Tate-LaBianca murders of 1969. On the same day, a military coup in Uganda brings General Idi Amin to power and the 170 delegates of the Ulster Unionist Council (UUC) call for the resignation of Northern Ireland Prime Minister James Chichester-Clark.
1975: Bangladeshi parliament disposes of premier Sheikh Mujiber Rahman.
1980: Paul McCartney is released from Tokyo jail and deported after trying to enter Japan with marijuana in his luggage.
1981: Mao’s widow Jiang Qing is sentenced to death in China.
1990: Death of actress Ava Gardner.
1998: The Queen Mother, 97, has hip replacement surgery. On the same day, Victoria Adams of the Spice Girls gets engaged to David Beckham.
1999: Six International Olympic Committee members are expelled after an investigation into corruption.
2003: Serena Williams defeats her older sister Venus to win the Australian Open women’s tennis title.
2004: Opportunity Rover lands on the surface of Mars.
2015: Singer Demis Roussos died in Athens aged 68.
2017: Actress/producer Mary Tyler Moore dies aged 80. On the same day, actor John Hurt dies aged 77.
2019: The Longest-ever US government shutdown ends after 35 days when President Donald Trump agrees to three week of negotiations on border security by a House-Senate conference committee. On the same day, Roger Stone, a political lobbyist for Trump, is arrested as part of Mueller investigation for obstruction of justice, witness tampering and making false statements.
BIRTHDAYS: John Cooper Clarke, poet, 71; Peter Tatchell, campaigner, 68; Andy Cox, musician (Fine Young Cannibals) 64; Alicia Keys (Augello-Cook), musician/singer 39; Robinho (Robson de Souza) former footballer, 36.